Pia Isa – Distorted Chants

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‘Distorted Chants’ is the brainchild of one Pia Isaksen. After being active with the Norwegian stoner doomheads of Superlynx for around a decade already, she has now penned her own solo debut proper under the moniker of Pia Isa.

Compared to  her main outfit, Pia‘s solo recordings have a far more drone-like quality. Stripped of band surroundings, her minimalistic, rumbling riffs stand out even more here. Alone out there in a barren musical landscape where her mantra like vocals are given to boundless wandering. Her  Superlynx bandmate, Ole Teigen keeps her from getting lost in this soundscape, both behind the drumkit as well as the recording table. Once in a while she’ll encounter another soul in the form of  Yawning Man Gary Arce’s guitar leads or find herself hearing Om styled, oriental scaled music in the distance.

The 10 songs on display here are not a million miles away from her main outing, although that one is likely a bit more developed and varied with Floydesque guitar strains interwoven with Pia’s trademark droning or just plain bulldozer doom riffing. One of her songs is called ‘Sleepless’ and this kind of how the album feel.  Like it’s the middle of the night. You’ve already gone 2 hours beyond the remotest hope of sleep and then your mind begins to drift off.

 

By the way, for all you fans of ‘The Batman’, you should check out Pia’s Superlynx version of Nirvana’s ‘Something in the Way’. You can decide then for yourself which one would have fit better in the movie.

Back to her solo endeavor, it’s hard to single out any particular tracks, as each of them seamlessly blends into the overall whole with little need for individual prolification. You really need to let the whole album wash over you as her dreamlike musings and ever repetitive guitars hypnotize you into another state of mind. While the album itself is pretty short, clocking just over 36 minutes, its dreamlike quality will unburden you from all sense of time and you’ll be surprised only half an hour has passed by in the real world.

REVIEW SCORE

  • Music / Songwriting 9/10
  • Vocals / Lyrics 8/10
  • Mix / Production 8/10
  • Artwork & Packaging 8/10
  • Originality 9/10
8.4

Pia Isa delivers a collection of minimalistic drone mantras to that are as beautiful as they are haunting.

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